3 Quick work outs that don’t interfere with your gaming time
Testing out the Nike Training Club App
This post was written in collaboration with Goliath Gaming
A few years ago I started running. I was in a really weird space where I felt extremely down and “lost” with the direction my life was taking. I was close to leaving my day job to take a giant risk and go freelance. Around that time Nike invited me to join the Nike Running Club and challenged me to run my first marathon. I needed a challenge for me, that took me away from work for awhile and so, I did it. I ended up running the 10km Soweto Marathon and finished!
In the last few months I’ve found myself in a similar space.
I think 2020 has kicked us all between the legs. It’s been a heavy weight to carry and I know I haven’t been coping. I’ve hit some of my lowest lows and getting out of bed some days has been tough. During lock down I was confined to a two bedroom apartment and only saw my Player 2. The same heaviness from all of those years ago hit. I spent all my free time in front of a computer playing games. I’d finish work around 4pm and then start playing, and not stopping till 1 in the morning. It became pretty obvious after awhile that I had a problem, I was tumbling into a depression and an unhealthy lifestyle that consisted of eating things easily left next to a keyboard for snacking. I wasn’t moving. The cycle found me in a space where the more games I played, the more unhealthy food I ate and the less I moved.
Forcing yourself to get up is tough. However, it CAN be done.
The benefits of moving
You’ve heard of these a million times but it is worth recapping – moving, even for 10 minutes a day makes a huge difference to your mental health.
A little glow gets the endorphins flowing which immediately ups your mood.
Taking 20 minutes away from a screen to do some movement resets your mind and allows you to refocus.
There are numerous health benefits including more energy which ultimately allows you to be more productive.
Introducing the Nike Training Club App
The problem for many of us is that much of our free time is taken up by gaming. That’s okay. For others, with the financial effects of COVID, a gym membership is the first extra expense to be cut. If you’re locked down in a small space, that also contributes to a problem around moving. Which is why the Nike Training Club App is actually a lifesaver for any gamer looking to be better. The app is free on Android and iPhone. It is filled with a bunch of work outs and options to encourage you to move again. The work outs differ and you can choose beginner, intermediate and advanced options. You can even choose options to suit your time commitments OR to even help you regain focus or get your brain back into the game after a good few hours of clicking heads. I decided to choose 3 quick workouts that I’ve done and help me. I’ve included them below and explained why they’re so useful.
3 work outs that don’t interfere (AND HELP) with your gaming
I’ve been pretty candid about my mental health at the moment. Gaming has been a release but it has also formed a crutch that removes me reality. Sometimes I can’t just hide away in Siege or use Fall Guys as an excuse not to face the real world tasks I need to do each day. Full-Body Ignition is an endorphin driver. It’s designed to get the blood flowing and the endorphins spinning. I do it in the morning for a quick pick me up. Especially if I’ve woken up feeling “bleh”. It’s a 15 minute work out so it doesn’t take much time out of the day. The NTC app actually has a selection of endorphin driver work outs, so you can search the category and find one that you enjoy to get you going in the morning. I love the various “categories” that include series of work outs, because you can really find something that works for you:
This is a great one for early in the morning before you start the day.
Essential Restorative Yoga
Sometimes if I’ve been playing till late in the evening, I really struggle to sleep. I’m presuming my brain is awake (got to watch those pixels!) and it feels like everything is coursing through it when I climb into bed. I dream vividly and wake up feeling very unrested. I’m not very good at Yoga, but I find the stretching and breathing, while tough, forces me to relax and and really give the workout all my brain power (or I cannot do the poses!). The Essential Restorative Yoga work out is 20 minutes and low intensity. It’s perfect for beginners and designed for recovery and stress relief.
What I really like about the NTC app is that you don’t need to know Yoga to do it. The app includes videos showing you how to do the exercises so you can follow along if you get stuck. It also talks you through the whole thing, so you feel guided and “safe” throughout. I always sleep better after I’ve done a light yoga practice. Also, you can alternate for the morning as well if you want a gentle wake up.
Full-Body Goal Crusher
During lock down I was stuck in a small space and our complex would not let us in the common area. I’ve since moved but am still in a 2 bedroom apartment. Space is limited. The NTC app has this rad category that you can select specifically called “Big Workouts for Small Spaces”. The Full-Body Goal Crusher falls under the “Just you and 1 Sq. Metre” so all you need a yoga mat and you can get a full workout. The section even has a “Keep it Quiet (Don’t wake your neighbours)” option. They’ve thought of everything.
For me the Full-Body Goal Crusher is a nice all body work out that incorporates total body strength, functional strength and overall fitness. It’s roughly 16 minutes but you feel like you’ve worked out well afterwards. It also doesn’t require any gym equipment (which I don’t have).
You Can’t Stop Us
There’s the age old stereotype that gamers spend all their time sitting and not moving. We know it isn’t 100% true but I did find myself slipping into that space and the NTC App is a nice assistant to have, to remind me to move. I also think adding some me time to my daily routine and focusing on moving my body has been such a huge help for my mental health. I know many a time we push the workout line as a means of staying thin and attractive, but honestly, since COVID I’m less worried about how I look and more worried about how I feel. Turns out exercise is so much more important for that and I think when I focus on that, as well as movement, I land more headshots anyway. So it is a win all round.
Go give my workouts a try and let me know what you think.
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